That’s not a diet requirement

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TheBeachHouse

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We have a gf guest this week. We have been accommodating and not an issue. But she said today, as she thanked me for being so helpful, that most restaurants were also accommodating except one. I asked, of course, She said, she wanted scallops and they told her they would bake them without breadcrumbs. But she wanted them pan fried. So she counted that as not being accommodating to her diet needs. I don’t! I know the place, they grill the buns for their burgers and likely don’t have a pan fry station that isn’t already covered in glutenness. That’s not a diet request, it’s rewriting the menu and reorganize the kitchen.
to me, there is a difference.
 

gillumhouse

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They offered - she wanted special. She is out of line.
 

Morticia

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You know…on vacation we were offered a full Scottish every day. The innkeepers were ok with adjustments as long as it was adding to or subtracting from the full Scottish. Maybe they had gluten free bread, but they’d probably consider a request for gf as meaning you don’t want toast. 😉

There was no option at all for vegan.
 

TheBeachHouse

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She actually was unhappy I didn’t happen to have gf bread in the house.
 

gillumhouse

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An innkeeper in the UK posted on a forum there the other day how frustrated she was already - she had a guest who informed her ON ARRIVAL that she was GF and non-dairy. The innkeeper was frustrated with what she had to pay when she went to the store for the GF bread (she usually bakes her own but now had no time), biscuits (think cookies), and non-dairy stuff. She said she is considering a surcharge for GF - was asking others what they do about those costs. She also said perhaps it was the extreme heat that was talking.
 

Generic

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I've actually considered an extra for vegan. I would never charge a Celiac, but a GF... maybe. But if you learn how to make a vegan frittata, it's actually cheaper than using eggs and cheese :) The hardest part is learning to work with soft tofu... that's the stuff we find works best for the B&B... and when they are gone, it goes into everything as extra protein.
 

TheBeachHouse

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We always have choices. We always have gf and vegan choices on the buffet. I went out of my way to make a separate meal for her even though she could have enjoyed fried potatoes, oatmeal, yogurt parfait, fresh fruit, gf sausage or cereal. But she wanted pancakes and toast. I’d expect a gf traveler to bring her own bread. We have many dairy free guests. They generally bring their own milk. we also stock almond milk. when I buy gf bread o raffles, I generally use two in the package and end up throwing the rest away, so I simply have choices.
 

Generic

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We stock the waffles in the freezer because they are vegan, dairy free, gluten free, nutrition fee and taste free... okay, not quite :) But they are easy to just pop into the toaster and we don't lose them. You can always seal them in bags of two in the freezer, easy to pull out at any time.
 

theinnonthird

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We offer an extended continental breakfast only (bagels, Eng. muffins, toast, mini pastries, hard boiled eggs, yoghurt, cereals, oatmeal, bananas and clementines). When guests contact us in advance about gluten free/vegan/dairy free we respond with what we serve, remind them that they have a mini fridge in the guest room and are welcome to bring their own, or shop at our local stores upon arrival. We do not have the space to store additional breakfast items, nor is it calculated into our very competitive rates. I am so grateful every day that we do continental only - then again, we are not your typical B&B, so a homecooked breakfast isn't expected.
 

Tom

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If I quit running the inn, I think the diet hassle be the main reason why.
I serve a pretty traditional American breakfast. Everything is home baked.
We have a couple of gluten-free items: waffles (rice, corn, oat), blueberry muffins, and French apple cake. Always available and always tasty.
Dairy free – lactose – can be a little bit more of a problem, but I can work around it.
Vegetarian, never a problem – meat is not a part of anything, it's always on the side.
If you don't like eggs, I can manage something tasty for a day or two.
Vegan... We always have fruit and home-baked bread is vegan. But I figure if you're vegan, you're not used to having an elaborate meal and since your breakfast must be individually prepared out of a larger group and served at the same time, I can't make it too fancy and don't try.
Where I have a problem is when you stack up requirements: no eggs and no dairy, gluten-free and vegan.
And of course, where it goes off the rails is where someone declares a dietary requirement and then is able to bypass it at will.
I was preparing special breakfasts for a woman with a dairy allergy, and I see her putting half-and-half in her coffee. I warned her, that is not a nondairy creamer. She says, oh I can have a little bit dairy. But she was telling me no butter no hint of dairy in anything, so, argh.
A while back, a gentleman in a large family group, which booked the whole inn for the weekend, declared he was "gluten-free and vegan". Okay. I serve breakfast to him: a bowl of steamed jasmine rice with sliced strawberries on top. He enjoyed it and then I saw him sneaking a sausage from the buffet. I made a finger pistol, pointed at him and mouthed "busted". From then on, he ate what everybody else ate.
And it can work the other way too. Two weeks ago, I had a older guy (retired) and his son on a fishing trip arranged by the older guy's wife; she didn't come. When the two gentlemen arrived, I inquired about breakfast. The son informed me that his dad was supposed to be vegan. His dad interrupted, saying that he didn't want to put me out making anything special and a couple of eggs over easy and sausages would be just fine. They were here a week and on their last morning I fixed the vegan breakfast: home-baked high-fiber bread with avocado and almond butter as a spread and lots of fruit. They needed a light breakfast because they were going to be sitting in a plane for 10 hours and I told him that they could go home and tell the mom that "it was a nice B&B and they served a vegan breakfast". Maybe just once, however.
 

Morticia

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If I quit running the inn, I think the diet hassle be the main reason why.
I serve a pretty traditional American breakfast. Everything is home baked.
We have a couple of gluten-free items: waffles (rice, corn, oat), blueberry muffins, and French apple cake. Always available and always tasty.
Dairy free – lactose – can be a little bit more of a problem, but I can work around it.
Vegetarian, never a problem – meat is not a part of anything, it's always on the side.
If you don't like eggs, I can manage something tasty for a day or two.
Vegan... We always have fruit and home-baked bread is vegan. But I figure if you're vegan, you're not used to having an elaborate meal and since your breakfast must be individually prepared out of a larger group and served at the same time, I can't make it too fancy and don't try.
Where I have a problem is when you stack up requirements: no eggs and no dairy, gluten-free and vegan.
And of course, where it goes off the rails is where someone declares a dietary requirement and then is able to bypass it at will.
I was preparing special breakfasts for a woman with a dairy allergy, and I see her putting half-and-half in her coffee. I warned her, that is not a nondairy creamer. She says, oh I can have a little bit dairy. But she was telling me no butter no hint of dairy in anything, so, argh.
A while back, a gentleman in a large family group, which booked the whole inn for the weekend, declared he was "gluten-free and vegan". Okay. I serve breakfast to him: a bowl of steamed jasmine rice with sliced strawberries on top. He enjoyed it and then I saw him sneaking a sausage from the buffet. I made a finger pistol, pointed at him and mouthed "busted". From then on, he ate what everybody else ate.
And it can work the other way too. Two weeks ago, I had a older guy (retired) and his son on a fishing trip arranged by the older guy's wife; she didn't come. When the two gentlemen arrived, I inquired about breakfast. The son informed me that his dad was supposed to be vegan. His dad interrupted, saying that he didn't want to put me out making anything special and a couple of eggs over easy and sausages would be just fine. They were here a week and on their last morning I fixed the vegan breakfast: home-baked high-fiber bread with avocado and almond butter as a spread and lots of fruit. They needed a light breakfast because they were going to be sitting in a plane for 10 hours and I told him that they could go home and tell the mom that "it was a nice B&B and they served a vegan breakfast". Maybe just once, however.
Yes to all of this! I do not miss the breakfast crap. At all. However, it’s been a year and I have serious memory issues around the 18 years we spent running the inn. 😉
 

bluedragonflyinn

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There are some diet requirements out there that really stretch the creativity, that's for sure. Weird allergies, etc. I always ask when they make a reservation so I can be prepared ahead of time. Haven't had a complaint yet. ....crossing fingers....
 

Generic

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I draw the line at soy allergy... it's in everything. And lifestyle diets... don't tell me you are keto. He's a carrot... go munch
 
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We offer an extended continental breakfast only (bagels, Eng. muffins, toast, mini pastries, hard boiled eggs, yoghurt, cereals, oatmeal, bananas and clementines). When guests contact us in advance about gluten free/vegan/dairy free we respond with what we serve, remind them that they have a mini fridge in the guest room and are welcome to bring their own, or shop at our local stores upon arrival. We do not have the space to store additional breakfast items, nor is it calculated into our very competitive rates. I am so grateful every day that we do continental only - then again, we are not your typical B&B, so a homecooked breakfast isn't expected.
I'm with you! We are an Inn and not a B&B. We offer a continental breakfast as well (Yogurt, bananas, apples, oatmeal, cereals, 12 grain bread, muffins, eng muffins, bagels, pancakes, french toast, hard boiled eggs, milk, OJ, coffee, tea and Hot chocolate). When they let us know their dietary issues I just point out what options we have that fit with their needs. We also have toaster sleeves for GF toasting if they bring their own GF bread.

Maybe for those of you who provide the "Lemon Curd Breakfast" (my own nickname for the upscale gourmet type breakfasts that B&B's offer) you should add a surcharge for additions/modifications. Doing what you do every single day is hard enough. Catering to the entitled only validates their attitude and makes it worse.
 

MillerDunham

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Loved reading all your comments re; the trials and tribulations related to "Dietary Restrictions" !!! I no longer feel alone... guess misery loves company. We always do our best to accommodate real restrictions especially if they are due to serious allergies &/or medical conditions. I spend a lot of time planning the menu in an attempt to satisfy all our guests and then shopping accordingly. All too often there is no notice of restrictions when the guest books the room.... then when breakfast is served I'm informed that they're vegan, vegetarian, dairy free, egg free, gluten free, nut free, etc, etc, etc..... drives me CRAZY! We've just adjusted our booking site to make "dietary restrictions" a mandatory field that must be entered before being able to complete the reservation. It's a start.
I totally respect legitimate, real restrictions but it's getting out of hand and I believe 50% (or more) of these "limitations" are bologna.... am I allowed to say that to vegans and vegetarians???
 

gillumhouse

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I'm with you! We are an Inn and not a B&B. We offer a continental breakfast as well (Yogurt, bananas, apples, oatmeal, cereals, 12 grain bread, muffins, eng muffins, bagels, pancakes, french toast, hard boiled eggs, milk, OJ, coffee, tea and Hot chocolate). When they let us know their dietary issues I just point out what options we have that fit with their needs. We also have toaster sleeves for GF toasting if they bring their own GF bread.

Maybe for those of you who provide the "Lemon Curd Breakfast" (my own nickname for the upscale gourmet type breakfasts that B&B's offer) you should add a surcharge for additions/modifications. Doing what you do every single day is hard enough. Catering to the entitled only validates their attitude and makes it worse.

When I opened in 1996, I did continental Plus. I found guests to be disappointed in breakfast. So I started doing a full breakfast. I discovered 3 things: #1 - guests were happier #2 - it was less work #3 - it was easier to clean up after. (Granted, I only have 3 rooms and am off-the-beaten-path)

I make mini-muffins - makes enough to send guests off with a "care package", an unexpected extra with no extra charge - OJ and a non-citric juice, a fruit dish, entrée (cook's choice), a meat they get to choose (either bacon, ham, pork chops, my homemade pork sausage, my homemade venison sausage, or steak, and tea or coffee that I roasted from the country they get to choose - 26 countries in-house currently. I get up 2 hours before their breakfast time (they choose it), 2.5 if I have decided to make bread that morning - each gets a 3x5 loaf direct from oven (steak knife tucked under bread plate to cut it).eEnglishMuffinBread-gillumhouse.jpg
 

Kirstybu

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agh allergies. I'm UK based so for our hygiene rating we have to demonstrate that we log food contents against 12 allergens. including lupin. lupin?!
Thankfully I've yet to have an airborne allergy sufferer. eg airborne nut allergy. I'm not sure I'd be able to cater for them as its a small domestic and commercial kitchen in my home, so theres no real option to have a separate enclosed space to prepare.
I've had some proper interesting ones. Fermented goats milk springs to mind. They bought their own which had to be kept at a particular temp. i was holding back gagging, serving it to them. nasty stuff.
In terms of our breakfasts, we stopped doing a buffet this season due to spiralling costs and too much waste.
Each table starts with mixed fruit and yoghurt and a selection of cereals - yoghurt is on the side so dairy free can opt out and i have soy milk for them on request. I used to have more alternative milks (coconut, almond, etc) however we're only small so I was wasting so much. I found a few recipes that take soy milk (like a really great cacao porridge recipe) which means I dont waste it any more.
The 'main course' is a selection of, Full Welsh (theres a veg alternative too), Laverbread on toast with salmon and scrambled eggs, Eggs Benedict/Royale/Florentine then a couple of 'daily specials' which I keep vegetarian/vegan but dont call out that they are vegan to avoid putting off meat eaters eg sous-vide cinnamon syrup poach pears with granola is popular.
Full disclosure: They aren't really 'daily' specials, I just have 6 specials menus which I rotate daily all season and everything pretty much i batch make and freeze. Also keeps the hygiene inspector happy.
I make the bread every day in a bread maker and buy a vegan/GF loaf and keep it in the freezer. Nasty stuff but means i've always got something for any one that decided not to select GF requirement on the booking portal.

My experience to date is around 20% of people who say they have an allergy turn out to be just a mild intolerance. 60% turn out to be a 'preference' (e.g. diet they found out about on tiktok). The remaining 20% are genuine allergy sufferers, and it's those i go out of the way for, and in my experience are the ones that give me plenty of notice, are often willing to bring their own food and will have a sensible discussion on how things are cooked and stored in the kitchen.

I keep hearing of nightmare stories locally of customers logging an allergy then picking something they cant eat off the menu. and if the server doesn't offer them an alternative (or worse, forgets to point out they cant have it) eg make a waffle from scratch using non dairy, no egg, GF flour etc. Then customer kicks off loudly in order to get the entire meal free. It's happening too often to be anything other than a scam. Thankfully I'm yet to experience that.
 
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When I opened in 1996, I did continental Plus. I found guests to be disappointed in breakfast. So I started doing a full breakfast. I discovered 3 things: #1 - guests were happier #2 - it was less work #3 - it was easier to clean up after. (Granted, I only have 3 rooms and am off-the-beaten-path)

I make mini-muffins - makes enough to send guests off with a "care package", an unexpected extra with no extra charge - OJ and a non-citric juice, a fruit dish, entrée (cook's choice), a meat they get to choose (either bacon, ham, pork chops, my homemade pork sausage, my homemade venison sausage, or steak, and tea or coffee that I roasted from the country they get to choose - 26 countries in-house currently. I get up 2 hours before their breakfast time (they choose it), 2.5 if I have decided to make bread that morning - each gets a 3x5 loaf direct from oven (steak knife tucked under bread plate to cut it).View attachment 200
What you do for your guests is truly remarkable! I admire all of you and really respect you for your commitment to your businesses! I agree that any establishment that calls itself a B&B is totally expected to provide a better breakfast. 14 years ago when I started working here the management called this place a B&B even though it is most definitely not. At that time we had 18 rooms and no kitchen other than the one in the "apartment" that was rented out nightly. So, for those with B&B expectations breakfast was a total let down. After a couple of years of that nonsense I got the owner to stop letting that particular manager control things and I was "gifted" with the job. We are an Inn. 15 rental rooms. Upwards of 35-40 guests in house each night. I think our breakfast is nice and guests are appreciative of all that we offer. If this was a B&B with the breakfast expectations I don't think I would have purchased this Inn no matter how charming, interesting and unique it is. As I have said - cooking is not my thing - but I can really appreciate everything that all of you provide!
 

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